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    Venba

    Game » consists of 0 releases. Released Jul 31, 2023

    Venba is a narrative adventure game about an Indian family who recently moved to Canada.

    Venba is the 26th selection of the UUGPGC year 2. Finish by December 18 2023. Spoilers open!

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    bigsocrates

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    #1  Edited By bigsocrates

    SPOILERS OPEN

    Welcome to the Unsanctioned Unofficial Game Pass Game Club. Our 26th game of 2023 is Venba. The target completion date is December 18, 2023.

    We ask that until that date you use the forum software to mark any spoilers, either story based or mechanical, in the discussion below. Ideally the bulk of the discussion will occur after December 18, but if you want to comment before then you are welcome to so long as the spoilers are marked. We ask that if you leave a comment before that date you also come back to the thread after it to read other people’s comments and respond to them, though of course we cannot force you to do so.

    All are welcome to participate regardless of whether you have stated a preference to or not and there is absolutely no commitment. You do not have to finish the game to participate but please let us know if you have not.

    You are also free to come back any time after the completion date and share your thoughts! This club is meant to be open to all whenever you want to join in the fun!

    You can find out more about the Unsanctioned Unofficial Game Pass Game Club or suggest future games for it here.

    What is Venba?

    Venba is a narrative game about an Indian family who moves to Toronto that focuses around cooking and features puzzle like cooking segments.

    How long is Venba?

    How long to beat lists it as 1.5 hours long.

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    bigsocrates

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    I don't really know what to say about Venba. I liked it, I thought the story was good and the cooking gameplay was mostly at least mildly interesting. The characters were sympathetic, the art and music was pleasant, the story was engaging as you traveled through Venba's life.

    But it's all very slight. It's short, the gameplay is simple, you don't spend enough time with these characters to really get to know them and even the father's death happens offscreen without you seeing the aftermath or even really knowing when, exactly, it happens.

    There's nothing wrong with what's in the game I just wanted more. I think I would have been disappointed if I'd paid for it. On Game Pass, however, I only paid my time and since I enjoyed what I played that time wasn't wasted.

    I maybe also wish it had committed a bit more to the mechanic where you have to figure out the recipes. It abandoned that in the back end and just told you what to do, which wasn't bad but meant that the game's "difficulty curve" (to the extent that term is even applicable) was a little bit backwards, though it's also so gentle it doesn't matter.

    Venba is one of those games where I have no reason not to recommend it to anyone (except price per hour) but I also don't feel it's a must play like a lot of people do. It's a bittersweet little immigrant story and those are rare in games, but it's also mostly a visual novel and there is lots of other media that addresses these themes well. It's cool to see it come to gaming, but I wish there was more to it or maybe that it did more with the gameplay.

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    #3  Edited By noboners

    I really enjoyed my time with Venba. I thought the story was well told and the gameplay was just enough to push the story forward. While I was playing, I was hoping that the recipes would get more complex or the gameplay would become more involved, but looking back I think the simplicity of the presentation helped push me along and ensures that I finished this in one playthrough.

    I think the 3rd act was a bit rushed, but reading through the mom and son's text messages helps fill the gap in storytelling. And I love the difference between their cooking styles where the mother was very neat and tidy, while the son was making a mess.

    I think the suspense of finding the father after he got mugged was told really well, with Venba clearly worried but trying to put on a brave face for her son. I definitely expected more to come after that scene, but it just kind of moved onto the next one, while showing that the father never got new glasses.

    This was just a great palate cleanser for me in between the Holiday chaos and rush to catch up on Game of the Year candidates. I enjoyed the brief runtime and felt the conversational writing was really well done. I can easily recommend it to folks on Gamepass. 7/10.

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